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Archive for October 2020

“On Point” Quilt Finished

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Turkey Tracks: October 8, 2020

“On Point” Quilt Finished

This quilt is another very different project for me. But I loved making it, especially as decisions about the colors and the setting of the colors were made for me. The block that guest designer Denyse Schmidt created for Season 2 of The Color Cellective is BIG—20 inches.

This quilt is the final project (7), finished just in time for Season 3 to start in November.

I wasn’t quite sure how to quilt it, but opted in the end for this overall design with curves and some sharp points. I like the texture that developed a lot. The pantograph is Checks and Chase by Lorien Quilting. The row is 8 inches and is double, so 16 inches wide.

The thread color is the same kind of jade green that’s in the quilt—and that worked well too. It was dark enough for the darker fabrics and not too dark for the lighter. My fallback for quilt thread is always shades of grey, but they just didn’t work here with the mixtures of bright/dull/dark and light and dark. I use Signature 40-wt. all cotton thread on the longarm, and this thread color is Jade.

I also wasn’t sure what would work well as a backing, but I’m happy with this duller taupe colored fabric that has sprinkles of color that are, for the most part, also in the quilt. It’s Ruby Star Society, Speckles, and there is a very large range of colors in that line. This backing does not draw attention from the front of the quilt.

The luscious dark brown in the quilt provided enough for the binding, which I always cut on the bias. I did order extra dark brown in order to have enough for this 60 x 60 quilt. I could have easily and happily made this quilt much bigger, but wasn’t sure how it would come out in the end, if I would like the block, and so forth. I have tended to copy the Color Collective projects and then play with them—once I’m sure I understand how they work. I never think about using a luscious dark brown instead of black, but I will now.

November is coming up fast!

Haricot Vert Beans and More

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Turkey Tracks: October 5, 2020

Haricot Vert Beans and More

I voted this morning and came home to pick the filet beans again. I rescued the plants twice about two weeks ago from frost in the night by covering the plants with a tarp, and now they are turning to delicious, tender beans that are such a treat.

Look how healthy the plants look in the cold frame—as do the new raspberry plants behind the beans, which have been trimmed back so they don’t try to fruit.

This was my first batch of these little beans, and I have had two batches since, including this morning. There are loads of flowers and beans growing on the plants, which will fruit until they are stopped by a hard freeze. I thought maybe I had waited to late to seed them into the cold frame this year, but here they are.

And look at these beautiful squashes, garlic, onions, and shallots. They are almost too pretty to eat. The red onions are cipollini onions. I found a recipe to pan sauté them until they are caramelizing in the pan and then to finish them in the oven.

Nights have been much cooler, but rather than organize a wool blanket for my bed, I chose a quilt—the improv quilt I made in 2019—“Parts Department Party”—that includes blocks from two friends as we all made an improv quilt with our shared blocks. (This quilt is BIG and is folded in half here. Here’s the 2019 post that has all the pictures: https://louisaenright.wordpress.com/wp-admin/post.php?post=11105&action=edit)

I love the bear’s face in one of the little stars. The bear is an old Cotton+Steel fabric. But the designers did take their fabric designs when they changed manufacturers, so maybe someday we’ll see this image appear again.

I am putting binding on my “On Point” quilt from The Color Collective, season 2, designed by Denyse Schmidt. She also chose the fabrics and this placement of the colors. I like the way my quilting choice came out on this quilt—it has lovely texture. When the binding is done I’ll post pictures of the whole thing. When I’m sewing binding on a quilt I fold them and put them on this chair so I can admire them as I come and go during the day.


Written by louisaenright

October 5, 2020 at 1:37 pm

September Bee Inspired Block

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Turkey Tracks: October 2, 2020

September Bee Inspired Block

The Mount Battie Modern Quilt Guild met on Zoom recently and shared our blocks for September’s prompt challenge: our receiving member, Nancy Wright, wanted creative circles in brights placed on a neutral backgrounds.

You can see all the blocks we did on the Facebook page Mt. Battie Modern Quilt Guild.

I used the appliqué method I learned from our Sugaridoo QAL challenge in our other local quilting group, the Coastal Quilter’s (Maine). Sugaridoo used small half circles and then, in another row, 4-inch full circles. I hoped that a BIG circle would also work. It does.

I used one of my diner plates to trace the circle on the fusing side of 101 SF interfacing. I layed the interfacing circle on the FRONT of the newsprint fabric and sewed around the drawn circle. Next, clip away the inner circle and clip into the curves. Turn the interfacing to the back—and if you’ve got the fusible side next to the fabric, you can use the tip of the iron to lightly fuse the circle edge so it is stable and all the interfacing is no longer showing. (Don’t fuse any more than just around the circle edge.) Then you just lay the open newsprint/backingcircle over your prepared circle fabric and pin it down. Pull at the edges of the outer fabric to smooth everything down well. Next, sew around the edge of the (newsprint fabric here) circle—use a bigger stitch. Then trim out all the excess fabric on the back, leaving your backing intact of course. Finally, give the finished piece a nice ironing.

I’ve been looking for a painless way to create BIG circles where the method does not need a ruler. This method works for me.

I deliberately placed my circle off-center and left a lot of surrounding backing so Nancy will have lots of room to manipulate/trim my block when quilt top assembly begins.

Written by louisaenright

October 3, 2020 at 9:26 am

Beet/Carrot/Ginger Soup

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Turkey Tracks: Recipes: October 2, 2020

Beet/Carrot/Ginger Soup

The root veggies are in full abundance now, so let’s make some delicious soup with some of them.

Start by roasting some beets. Mine are golden beets. Just put your beets in a covered container that can go in the oven, add an inch or so of water, cover the beets, and bake them at 350 degrees until a sharp knife pierces to their centers. Medium size beets take about 40 minutes. Let them cool for a bit, slice off the ends, and the peel will slide off if rubbed with something rough, like a paper towel. Chop, use some in salads, and reserve the rest for this soup.

When you are ready to start your soup, pan fry some carrots and onions in a heavy pot until they start to color a bit. Season with salt. I used duck fat. Add the chopped ginger at this stage—you don’t need to peel it. Just it into small pieces. I didn’t add garlic, but you could.

Add some stock or water—whatever you have. This is chicken stock with its fat intact. And I added herbs from the garden: tarragon, a touch of mint, and some basil leaves I froze whole. See how green the basil leaves stayed in the freezer? This is probably too much stock to add, so I will cook it all down a bit. But for a quick and flavorful soup, add less stock—just enough to cover the veggies by an inch or so.

When the stock is hot, add the roasted beets and cook until the carrots are tender.

You could eat the soup in this “chunky” form.

Or you could blend it—as French country cooking would do. I love my “boat motor” appliance for this task as I don’t have to try to put hot soup in a blender. (I like the type that plugs in as the battery ones I’ve had don’t hold up over time due to the battery stopping to take a charge.)

Here’s my lunch, which I’ve topped with a swirl of heavy raw cream. And it is delicious! This soup is naturally very sweet. On the side: tangy goat cheese and Mary’s Gone crackers.

I have enough soup for other meals and will freeze some too. The frozen soup can be eaten in this form or added to another soup to deepen flavor.

Written by louisaenright

October 2, 2020 at 10:15 am